Recipes – Haircare

“How many people had to die before we realized that smoking actually causes cancer?” Anyone who has ever glanced at a lotion or shampoo bottle has probably noticed a mystifying array of multi-syllabic chemicals. We assume they’re safe enough to put on our bodies – but how much do we really know about the products we slather on each day? Consumer health advocates and some researchers have for years warned that at least some of those are unsafe. And they are trying to connect the dots between these intimately used products and some worrying and unexplained disease trends – particularly in women.

“Cancer, infertility, allergies, ADHD, autism, thyroid issues are on the rise, and people can’t figure out why,” Known or suspected carcinogens like formaldehyde – found in some keratin hair treatments, body soap and nail polish – and coal tar – found in some hair dyes and shampoo – are of top concern in beauty products. So are heavy metals, like lead found in lipsticks and clay-based products, and endocrine-disrupting chemicals like parabens and phthalates, among others. Women use an average of 12 products a day – nearly 200 chemicals – according to a 2004 study by the Environmental Working Group (EWG), a non-profit environment and health advocacy group. Data on real-world chemical exposure is limited, and most safety assessments look at one chemical and one source at a time. But we are not using just one product.

Our daily exposure can greatly outweigh what one company claim is a low dose in their product, which is why we should be concerned. So here are some natural haircare products for you to try at home so you have one less thing to worry about every day for you and your family.

Hair Care

An effective shampoo should:

Cleanse the hair: Shampoo helps to remove dirt and soil from the hair and scalp. Sebum, dust and styling products build up on hair over time, and shampoo is needed to remove them, without being too harsh and removing beneficial lipids on the hair.

Close the cuticle: The cuticle is the outermost layer of the hair and resembles roof tiles. A good shampoo will make sure that cells of the cuticle are laid flat, thus protecting the underneath layers from damage.

Balance pH of hair: Hair needs a slightly acidic pH in order for the cuticle to be closed down, and to decrease the static electricity which causes tangles and damage to the hair. It’ a good idea to use PH strips to test product acidity levels. Body soaps have alkaline PH however, hair soaps should have a more acid or neutral PH.

Contain a preservative: If a homemade mixture is left at room temperature for more than a few days, it is very likely to show microbial growth in it. You can use rosemary or tea tree essential oils as natural preservative or try Germall Plus or Optiphen Plus which are broad-spectrum and water-soluble if you are concerned or need the product to last longer. Bar soaps typically don’t need a preservative since the pH is too high for bacteria to grow.

Include an emulsifier or solubilizer or surfacant:  If mixing oil and water – two ingredients that are incompatible without an emulsifier or solubilizer or surfactant.  Without these additions, it will leave your hair feeling (and looking) rather oily after using it. It’s best to get silicon free and paraben free ones if possible.

DIY haircare recipes are commonly based around the following ingredients:

  • Castile soap
  • Coconut milk
  • Cold process soap bars
  • Baking soda

These ingredients should be used with care. If a DIY recipe is not preserved or stored correctly, it can lead to bacteria, yeast and mould proliferating in them causing infections.

Castile soap will definitely cleanse the hair, but the pH of castile soap is very high (or alkaline – the opposite of acidic), around 9 -10, which is completely unsuitable for hair. When hair is treated with an alkaline product, it will leave the cuticle cells open and prone to damage. Hair with an imbalanced pH will also be a lot more prone to breaking and tangling. Offset this with a nourishing hair oil or D Panthenol added.

Coconut milk on its own, (without soap added), will not cleanse the hair. The pH of coconut milk is close to neutral (around 6.0-7.0), which is too high for the hair. Coconut milk will provide some vitamins and moisturization to the hair, but it won’t close the cuticle or balance the pH of the hair. Consider using coconut soap base instead.

Baking Soda: Baking soda can act as a degreaser, so it will remove some of the oils from the hair, but it won’t do it very gently. A solution of baking soda in water has a very high pH, (about 9.5), which is too high for the hair, and can irritate your scalp. It will not close the cuticle and will eventually leave your hair brittle and prone to breakage. Citric acid can be used as a PH balancer.

Body soap bars: Soap bars are very similar to liquid castile soap, but they have a solid form. The chemistry behind these two products is the same and they both have a pH which is way too high for the hair. Soap bars will clean the hair effectively, but since they won’t close the cuticle down, or balance the pH of the hair, it will leave the hair dry, tangled and prone to further damage.

Selecting Natural Oil Ingredients

When it comes to choosing natural oils, there are hundreds of options. The right oil will largely depend on what your hair type needs. Start by identifying what type of hair you have and any specific hair needs such as increased moisture, less oil, or colour protection.

Coconut oil results in harder soap bars than olive oil, but olive oil tends to be more nourishing making it ideal for dry hair or damaged hair. Sweet almond oil is great for color-treated hair thanks to its natural color-staying properties.

Avocado oil helps tame flyaways and is particularly suited for curly hair. Jojoba oil is known to mimic the production of sebum. Using this oil in your homemade shampoo bar can help minimize oil production for people who have oily hair.

Most shampoo bars also incorporate castor oil because it helps increase lather. Since this oil can cause sticky build-up, it’s best to keep the concentration to below 10 percent of your total ingredients.

Tallow oil, or the vegan-friendly alternative of palm oil, both have a long shelf life that makes them suitable for soap and shampoo bars. These oils help prevent decomposition and preserve the integrity of your shampoo bar so you can use it longer than alternatives. For our shampoo bar recipe, we’ll use a combination of these natural oils.

Essential oils

Many shampoo bar recipes also include essential oils in addition to nourishing natural oils. Essential oils are used to add natural fragrance and can also improve the look and feel of your hair. Try out citrus scents including bergamot essential oil and lemon oil or go floral with lilac essential oil or lavender essential oil.

Rosemary oil can help prevent hair loss and even increase hair growth in some individuals. Tea tree is another popular favourite that adds a refreshing, clean finish to the shampoo bar. Your imagination is your only limitation when it comes to dreaming up essential oils blends for shampoo bar soap. Both can be used as natural preservatives also.

Here are some essential oil blends for hair products:

Healthy Hair

Rosemary
Lavender
Peppermint

Boy blend

Sandalwood
Bergamot
Lemongrass

Girl blend

Lavender
Clary sage
Wild orange
Lime

Kid blend

Lavender
Roman Chamomile

Different challenges with hair types

Afro-textured hair

Afro-textured hair usually likes pre-wash oil treatments, and haircare products that contain oils, other emollients and cationic ingredients (but not humectants which can actually damage Afro-textured hair). People with Afro-textured hair often follow so called CO-wash method, where CO stands for Conditioner Only; they skip the shampoo entirely, and just use a conditioner in their washing routine.

Asian hair

Within the broad category of Asian hair, there are several different subtypes. It can be slick and straight, frizzy and fine, or even thick and heavy. The one thing that the majority of Asian hair types do have in common, however, is that compared to Caucasian hair, the cuticle layer is thicker, and the cuticles themselves are inclined in a steeper angle. These cuticles are laid out like overlapping plates on each strand of hair, and they form a barrier that seals in moisture. The flip side of this is that a thicker cuticle layer can also mean a much more difficult time getting penetration into the hair shaft—and this can mean anything from hair dye that doesn’t take to other chemical treatments.

Caucasian hair

Caucasian hair can be anywhere from wavy to stick-straight, and can be fine, medium, or thick, as well. It can be next to impossible to formulate a product that works perfectly for this wide variety of hair types and needs, but you can begin to narrow down your focus to specific issues, even within a certain hair type.

Formulating for Different Hair Types

  • The straighter the hair, the more easily the natural oils can travel down the shaft. Because of this, products for straight hair—especially fine or thin straight hair—don’t need an abundance of heavy ingredients like oil, butters and cationic emulsifiers.
  • Frizzy hair gets worse in high humid environments so adding lots of humectants in a product is not a good idea.
  • Thinning hair—hair with low density of hair fibers per area of scalp as a result of baldness or other type of hair loss—is usually treated with prescription drugs, but some herbal ingredients, essential oils, and botanical extracts can help stimulate hair follicles and encourage hair growth.
  • Fine hair describes hair with low diameter of hair fibre cross section, while thick hair literally has a larger sized strand. Fine hair can easily be weighed down by rich products with lots of oils and butters, so it needs a lighter conditioner, preferably containing some hydrolyzed protein to add volume.
  • Thicker hair is stronger and more resistant to damage, but it also resists styling. It loves having humectants to bring in moisture.
  • Oiliness/dryness will have an impact in choosing ingredients. For example: dry hair needs gentler products with mild surfactants and lower cleansing ability, while oily hair will usually benefit from slightly more cleansing shampoos. When it comes to conditioners, oily hair won’t tolerate conditioners with a high oil content, but dry hair will.

Hair Shampoo Recipes

Basic Shampoo Recipe

  • 7 tablespoons Castile liquid soap
  • 6 teaspoons coconut milk
  • ½ teaspoon coconut oil
  1. Mix together all the ingredients in a storage container.  You can use an old shampoo bottle, foaming soap dispenser, or a mason jar.
  2. After getting hair wet, apply a quarter-size amount to the hair and lather in.
  3. This shampoo will last for a month when stored in the fridge in an airtight container.
  • Use apple cider vinegar diluted for after rinse if hair is greasy
  • Add fenugreek powder for detangling

Honey Shampoo 

  1. Mix the coconut milk and castile soap together in a small bowl.
  2. In a separate bowl, stir together the olive oil and honey. Make sure it is well combined.
  3. Add the oil and honey to the coconut milk and castile soap.  Stir well.
  4. Drop-in vitamin E oil and essential oils. Stir well.
  5. This shampoo will last for a month when stored in the fridge in an airtight container.

Use apple cider vinegar diluted for after rinse if hair is greasy

Baby Shampoo

  • 1/4 cup castile soap
  • 1 tablespoon glycerin
  • 1 teaspoon fractionated coconut oil
  • 5 drops lavender essential oil
  • 3 drops roman chamomile essential oil
  • 10-ounce foaming soap container
  1. Add all the ingredients to the foaming soap container and top off with water.
  2. Shake before each use to combine the ingredients.

Conditioning shampoo & body wash

  • 1/3 cup Coconut milk (thick part)
  • 1/3 cup Castille liquid soap
  • 1/3 cup Lemon green Tea or any other nourishing tea
  • Essential oils

Shake well. Can be used as shampoo conditioner and body wash

Basic easy shampoo bar

  • 1lb melt and pour soap base (For dry or damaged hair, use shea butter, honey, or a coconut milk soap base. For normal hair, use glycerin and goat milk melt and pour soap base)
  • 2 tablespoons cocoa butter
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons vitamin E oil
  • 25-50 drops essential oils
  1. Cut the soap base into small chunks and place them into a double boiler.
  2. Add in cocoa butter.
  3. Melt over medium heat. Stir occasionally with a wooden spoon.
  4. Remove from heat. Add in olive oil, vitamin E oil, and essential oils.
  5. Stir to combine all ingredients.
  6. Pour into a soap mold.
  7. Allow it to completely harden and then pop the soap out of the mould.

If stored in an airtight container, these melt and pour shampoo bars can last up to one year.

Hair Conditioner Recipes

Essential oil conditioner

  • 2 tablespoons cocoa butter
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1 tablespoon jojoba oil
  • 1 teaspoon aloe vera
  • 15-20 drops essential oilof choice
  1. In a double boiler, melt the cocoa butter and coconut oil together.  You can make your own double boiler by placing a glass bowl over a pot of boiling water.
  2. After the cocoa butter and coconut oil are melted together, remove from the heat.  Let cool for 5 minutes and then add in the jojoba oil, aloe vera, and essential oils.
  3. Stir well and pour into a storage container.
  4. After washing hair with shampoo, add about a teaspoon of the conditioner to the scalp and massage in.  Allow the mixture to sit on the hair for 2-3 minutes and then rinse out.

Coconut Milk Conditioner

Coconut milk is great for both your hair and skin. This conditioner recipe uses a combination of coconut oil and coconut milk, along with lavender essential oil. The coconut oil helps cleanse the hair follicles, and its fatty acids restore lost moisture to your hair. The lavender essential oil boosts hair growth and adds an antibacterial layer on the scalp. This conditioner also takes care of dandruff and other scalp infections.

  • Coconut milk (rich in essential vitamins) – 3 tablespoons
  • Extra-virgin coconut oil (moisturizes hair) – 1 tablespoon
  • Lavender essential oil (antibacterial, boosts hair growth) – 15 drops
  • Distilled water – 3 tablespoons

Use blender to combine. Lasts 3 weeks.

Essential Oil Nourishing Conditioner

Not only do they smell great, but essential oils can also deal with most hair troubles, without leaving any product build up on your scalp. This conditioner uses the best of the best essential oils to make your hair healthier, give it a nice sheen and boost your hair growth. It also has apple cider vinegar that helps normalize your scalp’s pH and nourish your hair with essential nutrients. The glycerin in the conditioner works as a humectant to absorb moisture from the air and lock it into your hair.

  • Lemon essential oil (antibacterial) – 2 drops
  • Lavender essential oil (boosts hair growth) – 2 drops
  • Carrot seed essential oil (softens hair) – 2 drops
  • Tea tree essential oil (antifungal) – 1 drop
  • Rosemary essential oil (prevents hair loss) – 3 drops
  • Vegetable glycerin (humectant) – ½ teaspoon
  • Distilled water – 4 tablespoons
  • Raw apple cider vinegar (normalizes pH of the scalp) – 4 tablespoons

Whisk it up and spray this mixture onto your hair when damp. Leave it in or rinse it out. Lasts 3-4 months

Gelatin Conditioner for limp damaged hair

Just like eggs, gelatin helps fill the keratin gaps in your hair shafts and makes it stronger. However, gelatin has an advantage over eggs, as its proteins are small enough to bind with the hair easily.

This hair conditioner also has coconut oil that moisturizes your hair and also forms an antibacterial layer over it. The tea tree and rosemary essential oils used have anti-microbial and anti-hair fall properties respectively.

  • 1 tbsp Gelatin crystals (gives a protein boost)
  • 2 teaspoons Coconut oil (moisturizes hair)
  • 10 drops Tea tree essential oil (antimicrobial)
  • 10 drops Rosemary essential oil (prevents hair loss)
  • 1 cup Distilled water
  • Pump bottle
  1. Set a bowl inside a pot of hot water on medium heat.
  2. Pour ½ cup of distilled water into the glass bowl.
  3. Dissolve the gelatin crystals in the warm water by stirring as it heats up
  4. Add 2 teaspoons of coconut oil and use a blender to mix it well. Let the blend cool down a bit.
  5. Add 10 drops each of tea tree and rosemary essential oils.
  6. Add ½ cup of distilled water to dilute and blend again using a motorized blender.
  7. Pour the blend into a pump bottle to store using funnel if required.
  8. Use it once or twice every week to strengthen your hair and give it a healthy shine. The shelf life is 3 to 4 months when stored in a dry and cool place.

Conditioner for dry/damaged hair (themiracleofessentialoils.com)

  • ¼ cup of aloe vera gel
  • 2 teaspoons of apple cider vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons of coconut oil
  • ¼ cup of distilled water or rose hydrosol
  • 10 drops of lavender
  • 5 drops of eucalyptus
  • 5 drops of geranium
  1. In a glass bowl, combine only the aloe vera gel and essential oils. Mix for about 5 minutes to create an emulsion.
  2. Now add in the coconut oil and mix again.
  3. Next add the apple cider vinegar and distilled water and stir to create a smooth mixture.
  4. Using your funnel, pour your now-ready conditioner into a dispensing bottle for easy application.

HOW TO USE

  • After washing your hair with a gentle sulfate-free shampoo (or your own DIY shampoo), proceed to apply your essential oil conditioner all over your hair.
  • Allow the essential oil conditioner to work its magic for at least 5 minutes.

Now rinse off the conditioner and repeat one more time if needed.

Hair Conditioner Soap Bar (4-6 bars)

  • 2 oz Behentrimonium and cetearyl alcohol – BTMS
  • 4 oz Butter of choice
  • 2 oz Oil of choice
  • 3 oz Beeswax
  • 3 oz Panthenol
  • 40 drops essential oil of choice
  • Digital kitchen scales
  • A microwave or double boiler (glass bowl inside a pot of hot water)
  1. Measure out all ingredients on a kitchen scale and add into a double broiler, except for the essential oils and panthenol.
  2. Alternatively melt ingredients in a glass bowl in 30 second bursts in a microwave until almost melted, not boiling.
  3. When melted remove from heat and add essential oils and panthenol, then pour into moulds.
  4. Let cool then pop out and cut in half- depending on what mould you are using.
  5. This recipe is a total of 15 oz and makes each bar almost 2 oz each.

Aloe Vera Leave-in Conditioner (single serving)

  • 2 tablespoons Aloe vera gel (nourishes hair)
  • ½ tbsp Vegetable glycerin (humectant)
  • 2 tablespoons Distilled water
  • 5 drops Lavender essential oil (boosts hair growth)
  • 5 drops Rosemary essential oil (prevents hair fall)

Store in dark glass bottle. Use as a leave in conditioner also afterwards for frizzy hair. Lasts 2 wks in fridge

Aloe vera is another natural conditioner that can give you thick and lustrous hair. Rich in essential minerals and nutrients, it replenishes your hair and restores its natural sheen. Aloe vera also has antibacterial and antifungal properties, which help clear up any yeast infection on the scalp. This recipe also uses glycerin that works as a humectant to seal moisture into your hair. We also added rosemary and lavender essential oils, which not only prevent hair loss and boost hair growth but also give the conditioner a refreshing fragrance.

Leave-in Conditioner for dry hair

  1. Add all the ingredients to a small mixing bowl.
  2. Whisk the ingredients together until they are well combined.
  3. Using a funnel, transfer the liquid to a spray bottle.
  4. Shake well before each use.
  5. Spray conditioner generously over the hair and then style like normal. Avoid roots if you are prone to greasy or oily hair.

Leave-in Conditioner for Oily scalp

  • 1 tbsp Raw apple cider vinegar (restores scalp pH, make hair soft & cleanses)
  • ½ cup Distilled water
  • 7 drops Lemon essential oil (antibacterial & controls oil excretion)
  • Spray bottle
  1. Whisk it up and spray this mixture onto your hair when damp
  2. Spray conditioner generously over the hair and then style like normal. Avoid roots if you are prone to greasy or oily hair.

NB:  The strong vinegar smell will dissipate as your hair dries.

Leave-in Conditioner for Hair growth

  1. Add all the ingredients to a small mixing bowl.
  2. Whisk the ingredients together until they are well combined.
  3. Using a funnel, transfer the liquid to a spray bottle.
  4. Shake well before each use.
  5. Spray conditioner generously over the hair and then style like normal. Avoid roots if you are prone to greasy or oily hair.

NB: If shea butter rehardens, you may need to warm before spraying.

DIY Hair Masks

Coconut Hair Mask (dry hair)

  • 1/2 cup coconut milk
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 10 drops lavender essential oil
  1. Add all of your ingredients to a small bowl.
  2. Whisk together until everything is well combined.

Honey Hair Mask (damaged hair)

  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 10 drops lavender essential oil
  1. Add all of your ingredients to a small bowl.
  2. Smash and stir with a fork until well combined.

Avocado Hair Mask (oily hair)

  • 1 egg (white only)
  • 1/2 of an avocado
  • 1 teaspoon mayonnaise
  • 10 drops lemon essential oil
  1. Separate the whites from the yolk and add the white into a blender.
  2. Cut an avocado in half, remove the pit, and scoop the green fruit into the blender.
  3. Add mayonnaise and lemon essential oil to the blend. Blend on high until smooth. Add a little water if needed to make smooth.

DIY hair detangler spray

  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 cup filtered water
  • 2 teaspoon jojoba or fractionated coconut oil
  • 15- 30 drops essential oilof choice
  1. Add all the ingredients together in a glass spray bottle.
  2. Shake until all ingredients are well combined and mixed.
  3. Spray liberally into wet or dry hair before brushing.

Heat Protectant spray for dry hair

  • 1 teaspoon fractionated coconut oil
  • 2 teaspoons sweet almond oil
  • 2 teaspoons conditioner of choice
  • 1 cup distilled water
  • 10 drops essential oils
  1. Add all ingredients to a spray bottle.
  2. Secure spray nozzle and shake well to combine all ingredients.
  3. Spray on damp hair before blow-drying. Mist hair lightly a second time before heat styling.

Heat Protectant spray for oily hair

  • 1/4 cup aloe vera juice
  • 1 teaspoon conditioner
  • 5 drops essential oil
  1. Add all the ingredients to a spray bottle.
  2. Secure the spray nozzle and shake well to combine all ingredients.
  3. Shake before each use.
  4. Spray on damp hair before blow-drying. Mist hair lightly a second time before heat styling.

Hair Spray

  • 1 cup water
  • 5 tablespoons white sugar (adjust if needed)
  • 1 tablespoon 80 proof alcohol
  • 10 drops essential oil
  1. Bring the water to a boil over high heat and then add in the sugar.
  2. Stir the sugar water until all the sugar is dissolved.
  3. Remove the pot from the heat and allow it to cool.
  4. Once cooled, add in the alcohol and essential oils.
  5. Transfer to a glass spray bottle for storage.

Oil blends for hair spray

  • 5 drops lavender
  • 4 drops wild orange
  • 2 drops rosemary
  • 5 drops peppermint
  • 4 drops lavender
  • 2 drops lemon
  • 5 drops rosemary
  • 4 drops tea tree
  • 2 drops cedarwood

How to choose the best essential oils for your type of hair?

  • Oily hair: Bergamot, Lemon, Cedarwood, Grapefruit, Clary Sage, Bay Leaf (Laurel)
  • Hair loss: Cedarwood, Lemon, Bay St Thomas, Spikenard, Grapefruit, Clary Sage, Rosemary Cineole
  • Dandruff and itchy scalp: Geranium, Bay Leaf (Laurel), Palmarosa, Tea Tree, Cade, Bay St Thomas, Patchouli
  • Dull hair: Ylang-Ylang and Geranium
  • Thin hair or hair lacking volume: Rosewood and Lemongrass
  • Frizzy hair: Ylang-Ylang
  • Natural or Coloured Blonde hair: Chamomile

Hair Serum

  1. Bring the water to a boil, add nettle, and remove from the heat.
  2. Steep for 5-10 minutes and then strain the water. Discard the nettle.
  3. Pour the nettle water into the spray bottle using a funnel.
  4. Allow to cool and then add the rest of the ingredients.
  5. Store in the refrigerator for up to 4 months.

You can apply the serum to wet or dry hair.  Apply as often as needed.  Spray the serum all over the hair, starting with the roots and working your way down to the ends. Allow the serum to soak into the hair and then style hair like normal, no need to rinse out. You can also use the serum at night time before going to bed.

Deep conditioning coconut oil hair mask

These amounts can vary depending how long or thick your hair is.

  1. Melt the coconut oil until liquid. Add the honey to the melting coconut oil. If it’s cool in your home, you might try popping the honey in the microwave for a few seconds to warm it up. Next add the apple cider vinegar.
  2. Mix the ingredients well. If it separates a little bit, that’s perfectly fine. Just give it a swirl or two as you apply it to make sure you are getting an even amount of each ingredient.
  3. The best way to apply the mask it use a hair colouring brush or a natural pastry brush. Section your hair into four equal parts, then part your hair in half inch sections. Apply the coconut oil hair mask starting at the roots and move up to the tips of your hair. Once you get a section done, massage your hair with your finger tips to really get it in. Pile your hair into a bun and let it sit for 15-20 minutes, then wash with a mild and natural shampoo.
  4. If your hair is very dry, leave the mask on longer. Better yet, wrap your hair in a towel or use a shower cap and leave the mask on for an hour or more, then rinse. Style as usual.

Dry shampoo powder for DARK hair

  • 3 tablespoons arrowroot powder
  • 2-3 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 5 drops of essential oil (lavender to thicken, rosemary for oily, melaleuca for itchy scalp, cedarwood masculine scent or peppermint for refreshing)

Dry shampoo powder for LIGHT hair

  • 1/4 cup (60g) arrowroot powder
  • 1-2 (5-10g) teaspoon cocoa powder(you can omit this if you have very light or white hair)
  • 5 drops of essential oil of choice
  1. Add arrowroot powder, cocoa powder, and essential oils to a bowl and mix well.
  2. Depending on the colour of your hair will determine how much cocoa powder you will need.
  3. Start with less and add more until you reach the desired colour.
  4. Transfer to an airtight container for storage.

Application – a little goes a long way. Best applied using a makeup brush and applied to hair sections starting at the roots. Let sit for 3 mins before brushing. Style as normal.

Shampoo spray

  1. Add the vodka, essential oils, and arrowroot powder into the spray bottle.
  2. Top it off with water.
  3. Shake well before each use.

SOAP MAKING TIPS

MELT AND POUR SOAP

Melt and pour soap is the easiest method of making homemade soap. Because the soap base has already been made and prepared for you, you do not have to worry about working with lye, like you would with cold or hot process soap. It is fast and easy to prepare for both children and adults alike. All you have to do is melt the premade base, customize it with your favourite colours, herbs, seeds, honey, rind or essential oils and pour into a mould. Once you get the hang of the process, you can experiment with advanced techniques like layers and swirls. Melt and pour bases can be used for body soap and shampoo but they are not recommended for conditioner bars. I have provided wonderful alternative recipes that do not use melt and pour.

Cold process soap is made by combining oils and sodium hydroxide lye. That causes a chemical reaction called saponification. Melt and pour soap has already gone through that process. That means you don’t have to handle lye, you can focus on the design, and you don’t have to cure the soap – it’s ready to use as soon as it’s cool and hard.

A DOUBLE BOILER

There is no need to go out and buy a double boiler. A double boiler is nothing more than a glass bowl inside a pot of boiling water. Ensure the water does not get into the bowl at any time. A glass bowl or jug in a microwave can be used in 30 second stints as an alternative once you get used to working with soap as long as you do not boil the soap/butters. It must be dissolved slowly.

SOAP MOULDS

You need to use a mould that can withstand higher temperatures, so it doesn’t melt when you pour in hot soap. You also want it to be flexible so it’s easy to unmould the bars. Silicone and plastic moulds are best for melt and pour. Silicon moulds are the easiest to work with when making soap. An important tip is to spray the moulds with rubbing alcohol to prevent air bubbles before and sometimes on top of the soap after if bubbles appear on the top. Try not to move the moulds for at least 2 hrs when poured and if you are in a rush, place the soup into the fridge or freezer to harden quicker. They will sweat a little when they are taken out again so make sure to let them ‘breathe’ for an hour or so before storing them in an airtight container.

COLOURANTS

There are plenty of options for colouring melt and pour soap. Micas and colour blocks are easy to use and they look great in the finished bars. Natural colourants such as turmeric or saffron can also be used. It is not recommended to use options like food colouring or crayons because they haven’t been tested or approved for use in soap. They tend to morph, fade, or bleed.

Melt and Pour Shampoo Bar

  • 1 lbs Melt & Pour Soap Base of choice (goats milk, glycerine, castile, hemp, sulphate free)
  • 1-2 tbsps Butter of choice (mango, cocoa, shea butter)
  • 2 tsp Humectant Oil of choice (olive oil, castor oil or 1 tsp of each)
  • 2 tsp Vitamin E oil (optional)
  • 25 – 30 drops of essential oil of choice (e.g. any combination of Ylang-Ylang, Geranium, Lemon, Bergamot, Sandalwood, Peppermint, Frankincense, Wild orange, Lemongrass or Tea tree)
  • Small Spray Bottle with Rubbing Alcohol
  • A microwave or double boiler (glass bowl inside a pot of hot water)
    Soap Mould

1. Cut your Melt & Pour Soap Base and let it melt gently using a double boiler or in 30-second bursts in a microwave until almost melted, not boiling.
2. Remove from heat and add butter, oil, and your essential oils blend.
3. When melted fully, pour the mixture into a soap mould. Pro Tip: Spray with rubbing alcohol to prevent air bubbles.
4. Let cool for several hours, then gently remove your shampoo bars from the mould.

CONDITIONING BAR FOR VERY DRY HAIR, SKIN OR BEARD BAR

  • 1/4 cup shea butter
  • 1/4 cup cocoa butter
  • 1/4 cup mango butter
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup beeswax
  • 2 teaspoons carrier oil (castor, jojoba, panthenol, hemp)
  • 10 drops vitamin E oil
  • 20 drops essential oils, optional
  • A microwave or double boiler (glass bowl inside a pot of hot water)
    Soap mould

1. Melt shea butter, cocoa butter, mango butter, coconut oil, and beeswax using a double boiler or in 30 second bursts in a microwave until almost melted, not boiling.
2. Once melted, remove the bowl from the heat. Allow the mixture to cool slightly.
3. Add in a carrier oil, vitamin E oil, and essential oils.
4. Pour mixture into silicone moulds.
5. Allow the moulds to harden completely and then pop the conditioner bars out.
6. Store in a glass container with an airtight lid.

CONDITIONER SOAP BAR (4-6 BARS)

  • 7.2 oz Behentrimonium and cetearyl alcohol – BTMS
  • 4 oz Butter of choice
  • 3.2 oz Oil of choice
  • 0.3 oz Beeswax
  • 0.3 oz Panthenol
  • 40 drops essential oil of choice
  • Digital kitchen scales
  • A microwave or double boiler (glass bowl inside a pot of hot water)

1. Measure out all ingredients on a kitchen scale and add into a double broiler, except for the essential oils and panthenol.
2. Alternatively melt ingredients in a glass bowl in 30 second bursts in a microwave until almost melted, not boiling.
3. When melted remove from heat and add essential oils and panthenol, then pour into moulds.
4. Let cool then pop out and cut in half- depending on what mould you are using.
5. This recipe is a total of 15 oz and makes each bar almost 2 oz each.

LEMON CEDARWOOD BEARD OIL

  • 2 parts Fractionated coconut oil
  • 1 part Sweet Almond Oil
  • 1 part Jojoba Oil
  • 5 drops Cedarwood essential oil
  • 5 drops Lemongrass essential oil

1. Mix 2 parts fractioned coconut oil, 1part sweet almond oil, 1part jojoba oil, 5 drops cedarwood, and 5 drops lemongrass to a glass dropper bottle.
2. Shake well, and it is ready for use.
3. Massage a few drops into the beard to soften it.

SHAMPOO ESSENTIAL OIL BLENDS

SHAMPOO BEST SCENT FOR MEN

  • 6 drops lemongrass essential oil
  • 4 drops sandalwood essential oil
  • 4 drops melaleuca essential oil
  • 2 drops bergamot essential oil

SHAMPOO BEST SCENT FOR CHILDREN

  • 5 drops lavender essential oil
  • 3 drops roman chamomile essential oil
  • 2 drops wild orange essential oil

SHAMPOO FRAGRANT

  • 6 drops wild orange essential oil
  • 5 drops lime essential oil
  • 4 drops bergamot essential oil
  • 2 drops peppermint essential oil

SHAMPOO BLEND FOR HAIR LOSS

  • 6 drops rosemary essential oil
  • 5 drops lavender essential oil
  • 4 drops thyme essential oil
  • 2 drops peppermint essential oil

HEALTHY HAIR 

  • Rosemary
  • Lavender
  • Peppermint

BEST BLEND FOR MEN 

  • Sandalwood
  • Bergamot
  • Lemongrass

BEST BLEND FOR WOMEN 

  • Lavender
  • Clary sage
  • Wild orange
  • Lime

BEST BLEND FOR CHILDREN 

  • Lavender
  • Roman Chamomile